11 thoughts on “When Did Quantum Leap Jump the Shark?

  1. I didn’t start watching Quantum Leap until the third or fourth season. My first episode is the one where something happens and Sam and AL switches role (season finale) and Sam walks through a cannon?

    Basically, I couldn’t tell you when the series jumped the shark as I haven’t seen the whole series.

  2. This is still one of my favorites of all times. For me it was the Lee Harvey Oswald episodes. We knew Sam couldn’t save JFK.

  3. Never jumped the shark to me. The Evil Leaper storyline was ill conceived but could have been something wonderful.
    “Trilogy”, Lee Harvey Oswald and the two-part homecoming will always be my fav from the show.

  4. The evil Leaper trilogy were some of my favorite episodes!!! All the “gimmicky” stuff was amazing tbh – swap Al and Sam, leap into an ancestor in the old west, Dr. Ruth, a chimpanzee, maybe a vampire? Pure fun! And mostly well written. Jump the shark? No way!

    Heck, in the comic books, Sam leaped into an alien. It’s called being innovative.

  5. Loved this series. If it can be said to have jumped the shark for me at all, it’s in that last terribly sad line–that Sam never made it home.

    The new series addressing that–maybe–notwithstanding, that was crushing for the fans.

  6. I’m going to second Teague. If there were anyplace that the show really stumbled and fell, it was the final episode. It all felt so absolutely out of left field, and there was the misspelled closing card as a final kick in the pants goodbye.

  7. I would be inclined to say the Evi lLeaper – but, I also really enjoyed those episodes – in part because the Evil Leaper wasn’t “evil” herself – so there was a great mystery about the whole “evil leaper” origins and project. And there were only three – so it’s not like the entire final season was heading downhill.
    I also would be inclined to say the JFK episodes, because the tone was so very different from the other episodes. It was dark, gloomy and foreboding, while the series was constantly light, even when addressing serious social issues or in the evil leaper episodes. But, that dark tone wasn’t repeated.
    So, I don’t think of those as “jumping the shark” but rather what they were – exactly as you described – efforts to goose up the ratings while staying true to the show.

  8. I agree it’s the final episode or nothing. And I enjoyed the Evil Leapers. My head canon is that Sam’s small, individual changes had a cumulative effect of destabilizing whatever future the Evil Leapers came from so their mission was to restore their timeline by undoing his work.

  9. Two choices: Evil Leaper or the awful overwrought JFK episodes. I lean towards the JFK episodes as they bent and broke the show’s rules and were just terrible TV in general.

  10. I don’t think it ever jumped the shark. They put together some killer multi part episodes. The Trilogy, The Leap Home, etc. were just incredible stories. The last episode itself is one of the greatest episodes of TV ever in my opinion.

  11. It did jump the shark; 5th season no 14. the dr Ruth episode come on that was so silly…he was even trying to do her German ascent ….they should use that as the standard….they would say…..that show ” finally leaped in to Dr. Ruth”

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